Current estimates are that by the end of 2020, there will have been over 2 billion global, digital buyers and that these sales will account for over 15% of all retail sales around the globe. The impact and rapid growth of the industry cannot be ignored any longer.
During the coronavirus pandemic, arguably one of the most defining moments of the decade, eCommerce became a key industry and was less affected by global shutdowns than traditional retailers. Needless to say, during this tough time, the demand for eCommerce has skyrocketed – even traditional retailers are making the transition.
For any eCommerce business to compete with this snowballing demand, they will have to have a platform that provides smooth customer experiences. Online retail is highly competitive, and that extends to the eCommerce platforms the industry is built on.
There are more than 370 eCommerce platforms out there that businesses can choose from today. Not all of these options are suitable for larger stores or enterprise-level retail businesses, which can require extensive solutions for their clients.
Providing a good online customer experience is the ultimate goal for eCommerce businesses new and old; anything less can lead to brand-damaging reviews from unhappy customers.
We’ve shortlisted some of the best eCommerce platforms suitable for larger retail offerings, and the industries they are most suited to. For bigger stores, with more varied needs, these platforms can be the differentiator in customer experience.
Keep reading for our comparison of the top eCommerce platforms for larger stores:
Shopify Plus is the version of the original Shopify eCommerce platform aimed at enterprise-level retail businesses and the first option on our list. One of the most familiar platforms, Shopify has cornered 20% of the online retail market. Over 5,300 larger retailers make use of Shopify Plus in countries across the world, from startups to Fortune 500 companies.
Shopify Plus, beyond just the usual eCommerce capabilities, provides many benefits to bigger, international companies. This is because they simplify more befuddling tech while empowering retail businesses with the ability to handle big product lineups over multiple channels. Larger stores can be launched on Shopify Plus over an average of 90 days and get access to built-in wholesale solutions. These stores also get access to automation tools for sales campaigns and much more. Some of the biggest brands to use Shopify Plus include Nestle, Pepsi and Unilever to name a few.
Shopify Plus has many powerful features that enterprise-level retailers will be interested in: the ability to create multiple storefronts, scaling up to 8000 orders a minute per store, wholesale management and more. Shopify Plus is optimized for these verticals: beauty, electronics, fashion, food and beverage and home furnishing, but can be used for many more. Perhaps the biggest draw for Shopify Plus is that they match you with a re-platforming specialist if you need to migrate your store from another platform
Pricing for Shopify Plus starts at $2000, but the final price depends on the selected package and the size of the store.
The next option on our list is Oracle Commerce. Oracle Commerce is a cloud-based eCommerce solution for businesses of various sizes, allowing them to build and manage their web stores, social media platforms, and even mobile apps with SEO. With a strong emphasis on international selling, Oracle Commerce allows store owners to create multinational and multilingual online shops. It doesn’t end there; this platform goes beyond just the buying and selling process and also covers other customer touchpoints.
Oracle Commerce has some powerful features such as AI-driven personalization, drag and drop experience management and multi-variant testing as just a few examples. The platform also has capabilities that allow merchants to sell complex product lines and products that are richer in data, and require more information from the shopper. Some of the companies around the globe that depend on Oracle Commerce include Shop Direct, Lenox, Hollander Sleep Products, and Leroy Merlin. Particularly great for retailers that need multiple storefronts for different brands, Oracle Commerce
Other capabilities that have drawn retailers to Oracle Commerce have been options like catalog management, account-specific pricing, recurring orders, and volume-based pricing. At present, Oracle Commerce offers a license-based pricing scheme for B2B’s and enterprise-level retailers. Optimizing your conversion rates is much easier with this platform as it enables you to conduct split testing on multiple channels. Nearly 5000 companies rely on Oracle Commerce to power their online stores.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud
Salesforce Commerce Cloud is an enterprise-level online retail solution with various features. This Ecommerce platform is made to work for nearly any business application and is packed with features that will be of value to online retailers. These features include social integrations, tons of in-store extensions, customer catalog options, multi site management, and many others.
As a result, companies like Hugo Boss, Ralph Lauren, Adidas, Converse, and several other household names have created their eCommerce offerings with Salesforce Commerce Cloud. Nearly 3000 retail companies have made this platform the home of their online retail stores.
The greatest benefit of Salesforce Commerce Cloud is the integration with other Salesforce products. These products include sales cloud, service cloud, marketing cloud, and many more. Getting access to this host of products in an all-in-one solution is ideal for retailers looking to keep all of their behind-the-scenes work on one platform. Other positives this platform has going for it include data analysis, predictive intelligence, enhanced marketing tools, open customization, and several more that contribute to a unified customer experience.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud has been optimized to allow several online retail options: beauty, fashion, sporting, automotive, manufacturing are some of the biggest stores supported by the platform but it also has the capability to work for other B2B applications.
Pricing for this platform depends on the size and type of project and is quoted upon request.
Possibly the second most familiar option on this list, WooCommerce has an equal market share to Shopify in the eCommerce platform sector. The reason for this is largely due to the popularity of WordPress, which WooCommerce is largely connected to.
At least 5 million stores make use of WooCommerce to power their brands, making it by far one of the biggest eCommerce platforms on the list. Many companies, big and small, are powered by WooCommerce such as Weber, Singer, and even the world-famous rugby team the All Blacks.
Woocommerce is the open-source shopping cart plugin originally developed and owned by WordPress. This is one of the most popular online retail options out there, running at least 30% of all online-based stores. Woocommerce, due to it’s WordPress connection, is good for those with tight budgets but still needing robust build features. By far the greatest benefit of using WooCommerce is the affordability and customizability; as a WordPress plugin this option is easily accessible and there are tons of themes to choose from.
WooCommerce allows online retailers to sell nearly anything, from physical to digital products, and gives them the option to sort them, get reviews and offer different currency and language options.
Because WooCommerce is one of the most established eCommerce platforms out there, it also has great SEO potential to offer and makes it easier to get your product pages to rank on search engines.
This platform is best suited to the beauty, electronics, fashion, food and interior design verticals. Woocommerce does not have set pricing – instead, they take a small amount of each transaction done on the platform. At present, this amount is 2.9% and $0,30 of each transaction done with US-based accounts, with an additional 1% added for non-US cards.
Last but not least on the list there is NetSuite SuiteCommerce. NetSuite’s SuiteCommerce is a cloud-based online retail solution for merchants that are suited to both B2B and B2C experiences. This platform was one of the first eCommerce solutions to hit the market, and it has managed to expand to new heights today. Nearly a thousand online retail companies make use of NetSuite SuiteCommerce today.
Some of the top features offered by SuiteCommerce include customizable customer experiences, omnichannel support and unique shopping experiences that unify the store browsing and buying journeys.
With this platform, you can personalize every customer’s experience by tailoring the ads they see, the products recommended to them when they’re browsing your store, and several other valuable customer solutions. The NetSuite SuiteCommerce customer portfolio includes companies like Girl Scouts Of America, Maclaren, DIY Home Center and several others.
SuiteCommerce allows online retailers to manage orders from multiple channels while tracking inventory and managing stock levels. They support nearly any selling model and enable you to create storefronts for multiple different brands easily. A CRM, email marketing, and retail solution all in one package, NetSuite SuiteCommerce has put emphasis on developing additional options to expand their platform even further.
Pricing for this platform will depend on the business and features needed – it’s best to contact them directly for a personalized quote.
There are many eCommerce platforms out there, however the ones on this list are our frontrunners, being more suitable to larger online stores.
Bigger online retailers need key support and features that not all normal eCommerce platforms are able to offer. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon which is one of the biggest selling platforms in the world, once stated:” “If you do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful.” Part of building this great customer experience is choosing a platform for eCommerce that provides the best customer journey from start to finish.
In conclusion, we will leave you with a pro tip: when researching the best platform for your online retail business, take a look at your biggest competitors. The platforms they have made use of could be a good place for you to launch your business as well and can help guide you on which features you need to add to your own store.
It is always good practice to check out the businesses that you plan to compete with and find out where you can improve or outperform them.
Remember that every business is different and has very different needs; you should do your research, sign up for free trials, and find the option that best aligns with the goals you have set for your online store. The platform you choose will depend on your budget and the features that you need the most to reach as many customers as possible.
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